August 15, 2018

Commissioners approve $150 million preliminary budget

By Neal A. Shipman
Farmer Editor

McKenzie County Commissioners approved a 2019 preliminary budget of $150,223,798 during its Aug. 7 board meeting. The proposed budget is an increase of nearly $48 million from last year’s approved final budget of $102,463,901.
While the preliminary budget increase is significant, Erica Johnsrud, McKenzie County auditor/treasurer, says that the bulk of the increase is due to a big increase in the county’s road and bridge budget.
“The preliminary budget includes $102,652,059 for the county roads and bridges department,” states Johnsrud. “That is a $45.6 million increase from last year’s budget and is part of the county’s five year roads and bridges plan.”
Overall, Johnsrud says that all of the other county department budgets are pretty much in line with last year’s budget.
“We are proposing 4.5 new positions in the new budget,” states Johnsrud. “As well as a step increase in salary for county employees.”
Of the new positions included in the preliminary budget, Johnsrud says that two positions, one at the county landfill and one in the roads and bridges department, have already been filled. The other positions requested include an additional person in the roads and bridges department, one in the social services department and a part-time position with the Extension Service office.
“As far as salary increases, most county employees will see about an 1.5 percent increase in the 2019 budget,” stated Johnsrud.

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